Written by: James Ponds
During these challenging times, your sales team may need a little boost to keep them motivated. By using both technology and training, you can supercharge your salespeople and help them overcome some of the obstacles they face in our current marketplace.
Client Relationship Management (CRM) Tools
Client relationship management applications provide a wide variety of tools to help your sales team manage leads and track orders throughout the sales cycle. With this automation, salespeople can also be relieved of time-consuming manual paperwork and document preparation. Most agreements can be handled electronically, via templates in the CRM system, thus eliminating the lengthy process of mailing hard copies for signature. As an added benefit, with all your sales data stored in one system, collaboration is much more efficient, and management can accumulate company metrics. There are many of these products on the market, so if you don’t already have one, it may be time to take a look at the options.
In today’s highly competitive marketplace, being skilled in the art of negotiation is essential. It may be beneficial to have your salespeople complete a negotiation training course as a team-building activity. Once they have acquired or improved this skill, review the company’s profit model, so your team will know when price concessions begin to cut into company profits. However, negotiation training can help your sales team make their customers happy without giving deep discounts.
Ideal Customer Criteria
You will save both time and money by determining who your ideal customer is so that your marketing campaigns can target the best prospects. Begin by ranking your customers by sales revenue, from high to low, for the last twelve months. Look at your best customers, and think about what they have in common, then zero in on other companies that share those characteristics. From this analysis, begin to identify the qualities that you would most desire in your ideal customer. For example, prompt payment is likely high on the list. Or, you may prefer to do exclusively domestic business. Once you know what your ideal customer looks like, focus your efforts on locating them. This will improve your sales team’s chance for success and motivate them to go after it.
Customer Pain Points
One of the essential skills of a successful salesperson is the ability to quickly recognize the customer’s pain point. In other words, what is the problem that you can solve for them with your product or service? They might be trying to lower costs or increase efficiency, or perhaps they lack a particular skill within their organization that requires a specialist. This information is gleaned through active listening, then asking the right questions. Once you have found the pain point, you’re well on your way to a successful sale. Ask about their business and find out what their challenges are. Armed with that information, focus your pitch on how your product or service can solve them.
There are many digital tools available to help sales professionals be successful. However, as a salesperson, people skills are also essential. Clients must be able to trust you if you want their repeat business and like you enough to take your calls instead of sending you directly to voicemail. They need to know they can rely on you to provide excellent customer service.
Face-to-face conversations and business transactions are more complicated these days, and your sales team might need some extra encouragement. A CRM application can manage data throughout the sales cycle and make administrative tasks more manageable. Negotiation skills and targeted sales campaigns are more critical than ever if you want to stay ahead of the competition. Find your ideal customers, learn about their pain points, and show them how you can provide solutions. While technology can make the sales process easier to document and track, don’t forget the importance of the human element.